9.1 Monitoring the Evolution of Deep Convection Through the Use of Ground-Based Spectral Infrared Thermodynamic Sounders

Wednesday, 13 January 2016: 4:00 PM
Room 348/349 ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
William Gregory Blumberg, CIMMS/University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK; and T. J. Wagner and D. D. Turner

Members of the meteorological community have continuously stressed the need for the atmospheric community to work towards filling temporal and spatial gaps in our current upper air observing systems, especially in the boundary layer and lower troposphere. One operationally ready instrument, the Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer (AERI), has the capability to provide high temporal resolution thermodynamic profiles from the surface to 3 km AGL. The AERI is similar to the hyperspectral infrared sounders found on many polar orbiting satellites, but its placement on the surface means that it is primarily sensitive to the boundary layer's thermodynamic structure. Recent developments in thermodynamic retrievals have made the AERI a useful tool for providing high frequency (30 s) thermodynamic profiles in precipitation-free environments, including both cloudy and clear skies.

For an operational community that is accustomed to observing conditions above the surface on 12 h time scales, challenges arise when finding the best way to utilize the wealth of data provided by AERI. In this presentation, we will demonstrate the accuracy of AERI observations in convective environments by comparing them to coincident radiosonde profiles and the convection indices derived from them. We will also demonstrate how the AERI's high temporal resolution is a powerful tool when monitoring deep convection through case studies. Lastly, the implication of these tools on the predictability of deep convection will be discussed.

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